Woodland High School Spanish teacher Jamie Rocha recently won first place in the “Voces De Sacramento Writing Competition” for a short story based on his childhood experiences in Mexico.
The “Voces De Sacramento Writing Competition,” organized by the Sacramento State Department of World Languages and Literatures and co-sponsored by the Mexican Consulate and the Univisión in Sacramento, invited students and members of the community from the Sacramento area to participate in its first annual creative writing competition. in Spanish language.
Rocha, an employee of the Woodland Joint Unified School District, entered the contest after hearing about it from a friend and took first place in the Adult Writers category.
Her winning story, “Los Puerqueros” (“The Pig Buyers”), draws on her experiences growing up in San Antonio Ocampo, Michoacan, and watching women raise pigs for money while their husbands , including his father, immigrated to the United States. looking for work.
“It’s based on an actual event with a lot of licensing that I took as a writer to tailor it to the style I wanted to use,” Rocha said. “My mother, my aunts, everyone had pigs. All the women raised pigs to earn that extra money. There is a book waiting to be written about these women who did all they could to survive. But not just survive. It is also trying to give their children as normal a childhood as possible even if their father was not there. Thanks to these women, we had a normal childhood. Or as normal as possible.
The winners were announced on August 6, and students from Pioneer and Woodland High School took first, third and honorable mention in the Young Writers category.
Other teachers from both schools also received honorable mentions for their stories.
Rocha said it felt good to be recognized as a writer and that he was grateful for the sacrifices the women in his family and others have made to give their children a good life.
“For my part, I dedicate this story to all these women who found themselves caring for their children and their parents in very difficult circumstances when their husband and head of the family emigrated in search of a better future. Rocha said. “This story is a miniature collection of the voices of these heroines. I will be eternally grateful to my mother for helping us move forward, and to the many other women who made our childhood in San Antonio Ocampo so delightful, even under such adverse conditions.
Delia Zamudio and Beatriz Gutiérrez, teachers of Pioneer and Woodland High School respectively, won honorable mentions.
In the Young Writers category, María José Jaime Hernández from Pioneer High School won first place. Third place went to Xavier Tinoco, while Diana Reyes Meza won an honorable mention. The two frequent Pioneer.
Arely Gutiérrez, who attends Woodland High School, won an honorable mention.
The stories have been compiled into an eBook, which you can find on the Sacramento State Department of World Languages and Literatures webpage, or you can click here.